Editor's Note: In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Arkansas Extension Homemakers Council, this is the third in a series of stories profiling members from Southeast Arkansas and their contributions to the organization.
Editor’s Note: In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Arkansas Extension Homemakers Council, this is the third in a series of stories profiling members from Southeast Arkansas and their contributions to the organization.
While helping to compile a new cemetery book for Cleveland County, Kaye Green of Rison was invited by an acquaintance to attend her first Extension Homemakers meeting.
“I joined that day,” said Green, who is serving the second year of a two-year term as president-elect of the Arkansas Extension Homemakers Council, a volunteer organization associated with the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture.
Her role as chairman of the planning committee, which oversees all aspects of the annual state meeting, has taken on new meaning this year since the group is celebrating the 100th anniversary of Extension Homemakers/Home Demonstration work in Arkansas. The state meeting is Tuesday through Thursday at the Hot Springs Convention Center. On Wednesday evening, a Gala, including a reception and dinner, is planned. The program will feature representatives of some of the activities and organizations with which the state Council has been associated during the past 100 years.
When Green went to that first meeting of the Rison Extension Homemakers Club, she discovered that she had attended several programs, sponsored by the Extension Homemakers group such as the Mini Fair on the Cleveland County Courthouse lawn and the Christmas food program.
“There were many other programs I learned of and wanted to help with and share my talents,” Green said. “That was 18 years ago. I have thoroughly enjoyed every minute of every project.”
Since that time, she has served as president of both her club and the Cleveland County Extension Homemakers Council and will be installed as state Council president on Thursday. She has held numerous local and county offices and chairmanships and is a past secretary and vice president of the state Council.
The first member of her family to be an Extension Homemaker, Green said that her earliest memories of the group date back to her days at Kingsland High School; however, she didn’t know it until she joined Extension Homemakers. Two women came to her home economics class and prepared a quick dessert using canned biscuits, cherries, brown sugar and butter. One was Eugenia Hockett, the Cleveland County home economics leader (family and consumer sciences agent) at the time, and “I would not be surprised if the other lady was with EH. I still use that recipe today.”
But Green has received much more from Extension Homemakers than a treasured recipe. “I really enjoy the club meetings and getting to know one another better. Working at the fair, going on trips, presenting programs to the community – all make me a very happy and well rounded person.”
During her first term as county Council president with the help of the family and consumer sciences agent, they were able to start an officer training workshop. She also started regular sewing workshops for the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and the Arkansas Children’s Hospital, both at Little Rock. She said that she had to convince some of the members that they didn’t have to use a sewing machine to help.
“Being in EH has helped me to become a confident and outgoing person.” Green said. “I used to be very shy. Working with Extension Homemakers got me out of that in a hurry.
“I am especially proud to have worked at club, county and state levels. Who would have thought I would ever stand in front of hundreds of people and speak. I was a good cook, homemaker and ‘Jill of all Trades,’ EH gave me the skills to become great at these things. That is what EH has done for me.”
The Cooperative Extension Service is part of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture and offers its programs to all eligible persons regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age, disability, marital or veteran status, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.